Top 5 Internet Threats you Should Know

By: Mike

Internet is a wonderful medium. However there are some risks that everyone should be aware of. This article lists the five most common threats that exists when using the Internet. Although you might think you'll never face these threats it is clear that everyone should be aware of them.

1) Automatically downloading programs - Some websites try to install programs or addons to your computer. Usually you will be prompted by a window asking rights to the installation. A good rule of thumb is to always decline the installation. It is unlikely that you will need any extra programs for viewing the information you are looking for in the first place. However, sometimes a program or an extra plugin can be needed. If the web site is hosted by some big and trusted company you can rely on it is okay to install the software. However, you should always pay careful attention to what you install to your computer. If the software you install is a decent program doing its job - that's fine - but if it turns out that the program has more negative sides you may regret the installation afterwards.

2) Fake pages - These pages are made for pretending to be something they are not. User may receive an fake e-mail with a link to a page that looks just like an authentic webpage of some service he/she is using. The user is tricked to enter the fake page and when he/she enters the confidential information e.g. username and password, the data is not send where the user supposes it is, but instead collected by the con-men and afterwards used for illegal purposes. Pay always close attention that the page you are visiting is what it claims to be. One way to be sure of it is to always write the address to the address bar by yourself or use your own bookmarks when entering confidential websites.

3) Misleading popup windows - A popup window is a window that pops up in front of the other windows when you are browsing the web. Because of their great visibility popup windows have become a common way to show advertisements in the Internet. The popup windows you should avoid are the ones that open automatically when you enter a webpage. Nowadays the ways advertisers use the popup windows to catch the surfers attention have come to the limits. In some messages user may be showed an official-looking window announcing the user's computer is infected by a virus or an ultra colorful blinking message telling they have just won a million dollars. These are nothing but blatant lies trying to get the user to click on the ads - and that is especially what you should avoid the most. If you click one of those messages it is most likely that you are brought to a webpage that tries to install some software, very likely containing some nasty things such as adware or spyware. It's a good idea to enable a plugin that blocks unwanted popup windows if your web browser supports it.

4) Suspicious messages with attachments - If you receive an suspicious e-mail from a stranger or even from your friend remember to be cautious with the attachment files. If the language used in the message is not normal, it contains a lot of spelling errors, or the message is written by foreign language, it is wise not to open the attachment file. It can be a spam message sent by a virus or even someone trying to get you run a program in order to gain access to your computer. If you are not sure that the attached file is safe it's a good idea to send a reply and ask more info about it. If the message is clearly pure spam - which can be usually determined just by looking at the subject of the message - just ignore it and delete the message without even opening it.

5) Communication - Internet is a great medium for being in touch with people. And just like you do in you normal everyday life you should pay attention to who are you giving your personal information. You should pay perhaps even more attention since you can't tell anything about the other person as you do in real life eye-to-eye situation. Anyone can pretend to be anything in the Internet. Pay very careful attention when giving up your personal information. You can compare the situation in Internet to having a conversation in telephone. If you are going to meet someone you've met online, you would like to do it in a public place.

These are the most common risks almost everyone will face when using the Net. Even if you don't run into any of these threats it is important to realize that they exist. Now that you are aware of all this you can forget your futile fears and focus on the essential - what ever you do - this is the way you will be able to get the most of using the Internet.

Computers and The Internet
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Computers and The Internet